14-year-old Hak makes cut, history

Hong Kong, November 21:

Hong Kong teenager Jason Hak, 14, produced a birdie-birdie finish to become the youngest player to make a European tour cut on Friday, smashing Sergio Garcia’s record set in 1995.

Hak drilled a 150-yard approach on to the 18th green and holed a 10-foot putt, shaking his fist in celebration as he reached the UBS Hong Kong Open’s weekend rounds with two scores of 70 for level-par 140. Hak, who is aged 14 years and 304 days, beat Garcia’s record of 15 years and 46 days set at the Turespana Open Mediterrania in Valencia. “I feel pretty happy. I played pretty well and tried my best. I think that’s important,” he said.

Hak, who was born in Hong Kong but lives near Orlando, Florida, said Garcia was one of his favourite players although his idol was Tiger Woods. But the slight six-footer said he had not considered his chances of becoming Asia’s version of the world number one. “No, I never think about that,” he said. “I just try to play my best and not think about that much but control everything and keep it steady,” added Hak.

Hak revealed he balances golf with his schooling, picking up his homework online and emailing

assignments to his teacher. “I play a lot of junior golf. I won a couple of them but this is the biggest tournament I’ve played. It’s a good experiment for me,” he added. “I said ‘hi’ to Bernhard Langer, and I speak to Liang Wenchong and Zhang Lianwei and they were nice to me.” After his round, and with media swarming, Hak initially rebuffed requests for an interview. “I have to look for my father first,” he said.